Associate Research Fellow, Westlake University, Hangzhou, China
Rui Bai is currently an associate research fellow at Westlake University. During her research career, she and her colleagues reconstructed the near-atomic resolution structures of eight different functional spliceosomes and the first human minor spliceosome in the world by single-particle cryo-electron microscopy, and published 6 papers in Science and 3 papers in Cell as the first author and the co-first author. These structures, covering all the major states of the assembly, activation, catalysis, and dissociation of spliceosome, shed lights on molecular basis for the spliceosome of working states, and also gave rise to a complete structural view of pre-mRNA splicing for the first time in the world, which was one of the most fundamental processes in eukaryotic cells. In 2021, they captured and determined the first atomic-structure of human minor spliceosome, which catalyze splicing of the rare but essential U12-type intron. Her research accomplishments thus initiate a new era for mechanistic understanding of pre-mRNA splicing and provides unprecedented opportunity for drug development against debilitating diseases.
R. Bai received her Ph.D. degree with Yigong Shi from Tsinghua University in 2019, where she focused on structural and biochemical investigations of the spliceosome to elucidate the mechanism of pre-mRNA splicing and the regulation of the spliceosome.
She earned the 2020 L’Oréal-UNESCO For Women in Science International Rising Talents rewards, the 2020 awards of the DIMITRIS N. CHORAFAS foundation, and finalist of Rising Talent from China in 2018.